Well, I can officially say that I got in the latest I've ever come back from clubbing this morning -- around 6:30 AM! And amazingly, this was still early by the club standards, as in the club was still bopping in full force when we left! I'm amazed by how late everything gets going here. We had dinner at 11:00 PM and no one was there, hardly anyone was on the streets... gradually over the next couple of hours things started to pick up, and by 2:00 AM the streets were thronged with people and the club was packed. Actually, the atmosphere of the club was surprisingly similar to every other club I've ever been to-- I guess there's a universal appeal to hot, sweaty, loud and crowded. They played some American top 40 stuff and lots of upbeat Spanish numbers, and more than once I was suddenly and unexpectedly jostled all over the place when a popular Spanish song came on and the, er, crowd went wild singing along and jumping everywhere. It was definitely akin to where Journey comes on at the end of the night at a social back home!
One thing I did notice was that people didn't seem to be drinking that much! At home, everyone on the dance floor has a drink in their hand at every moment; here, it was quite rare to see, and we were spared that early-in-the-morning atmosphere of vomit, discarded bottles and glasses and incoherent, stumbling drunkards trying to find their way to the door (or maybe we just left too early?) It was nice because it kept the vibe of the place a little more civilized and a lot less gross.
The people are all dressed quite nicely at the club, especially the girls; I did feel quite conspicious in my loafers (although, in my defence, they are very nice loafers!) However, people are short here. It's a pretty rare day when I can walk through a crowd that size and feel tall, but last night I did. Navigating the language barrier when the bass is thumping made for some pretty interesting conversations. Guys would come up and start yabbering away, "Blah blah blah-o?" "No hablo espanol." "No?? Hablas ingles?" "Si, solo ingles..." "Blah blah blah blah!" and leave me staring blankly at them and backing away. I quickly learned not to respond to everything with "Si.." as well.
All in all, it was a really fun night and a super interesting experience. Today is looking like a nice day for lazing around, recovering some energy, maybe eating some ice cream and reading some Harry P... heaven!